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February, 2016

Stories from February, 2016

29 February 2016

Can Goodwill Gestures Help End Burundi's Political Crisis?

Two blocked radios are permitted back on the air, arrest warrants were lifted and some prisoners to be freed -- yet many remain unconvinced about the government's good intentions.

Ukraine's Eurovision 2016 Entry Is About Stalin’s Repressions. Russia Isn't Thrilled.

RuNet Echo

Ukraine’s entry for the Eurovision 2016 music contest is a song about the deportation of the Crimean Tatars by the Stalin regime. So why are Russian officials upset?

Body-Policing and Identity Politics Bog Down Trinidad Gymnasts’ Olympic Dreams

"So many countries celebrate an athlete's body. In my country, a female athlete could be shamed and disciplined for showing hers."

Colombia Edges Closer to Signing Peace Agreement

The final and hopefully definitive phase of a peace process is underway and the Colombian government is preparing for post-conflict reconciliation with its new plan “Peace for Colombia.”

Macedonian Court Rejects Appeal by Activist Sentenced for Defaming Pro-Government TV Host

Five years after the case first began, Macedonia's judiciary has finally rejected an appeal by an activist convicted defaming a pro-government television show host.

Belgrade Mayor Stands By Police Chief Who Interfered in Journalists’ Work

Belgrade Mayor Siniša Mali has refused to comply with the request of Serbia's Ombudsman to fire the chief of the Communal Police, who interfered with the work of journalists.

Youth NGOs in Central and Eastern Europe Tackle Corruption With a New Documentary Series

In the former Yugoslavia and former USSR, "from kindergarten to university, generations of children and students grow up learning about corruption from their own experiences."

28 February 2016

Saudi Arabia Sentences Twitter User to 10 Years in Prison and 2,000 Lashes for Apostasy

Global Voices Advocacy

Saudi Arabia has sentenced a Twitter user to 10 years in prison in addition to 2,000 lashes for publishing 600 tweets "which spread atheism" online.

Climate Change Is All Too Real in Kenya, Where Drought and Famine Affect Millions

"Kenya has been forced to redefine water as a scarce commodity rather than a basic need. What scares the most out of and me...is our inability to solve the situation."

‘Little Teresa’ Helps São Paulo Women Fight Drought and Male Domination—With Rain Barrels

Brazil's largest city is coming out of a drought, but its impact wasn't all bad. One woman saw it as an opportunity to empower women and bring her community together.

The Malaysian Insider News Website Blocked by Authorities for Posting ‘Unverified’ Report on Government Corruption

Global Voices Advocacy

"Such unilateral action could also be construed as an attempt to intimidate the media against running critical news reports."

27 February 2016

Desperate for Safer Roads, Russians Are Literally Filling Potholes with Money

RuNet Echo

In the past five weeks, there’s been a new slew of pothole-related scandals. Depending on your attitude about lousy public services and motorways, these stories will either entertain or disconcert.

Hokkaido's Popular Poplar Cut Down Because of Misbehaving Tourists

The tree had increasingly become a tourist attraction in recent years, with people traveling to visit the tree to snap its picture.

Disenfranchised Hongkongers Flood Their Chief Executive's Facebook Page with New ‘Angry’ Emoji

Hongkongers are making their feelings about the head of their government known, thanks to the launch of Facebook's new "Reactions" feature, which gives them the freedom to express their disapproval.

Can Mountains of Animal Bones Boost Food Security in Ethiopia?

By turning a wasted resource into fertilizer, researchers aim to help a hungry nation replenish depleted soils

Young Women in Kosovo Are Writing Code to Fight Harassment

Developers of a new app, Walk Freely, hope it will help solve Kosovo’s sexual harassment problem.

Anti-Extremism Police in Yakutia, Russia, Say They Have Ways of Finding You on WhatsApp

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

WhatsApp messenger is hugely popular in Yakutia—and the anti-extremist police force are on it.

Efforts Continue to Free Indigenous Activist and Ex-Director of Community Police in Mexico

Thirty months after Nestora Salgado's arrest, efforts to free her continue. The charges against her haven't been dropped even though international bodies have recognized her detention is illegal and arbitrary.

26 February 2016

Jamaica Peacefully Chooses a New Government. Young Activists Take a Bow

Close to 35,000 voters joined the electoral list for the first time. Could the youth vote -- and online activism -- have been the deciding factors in Jamaica's general election?

Anti-Aviation Protests in France and the UK Mark a New Wave of Climate Disobedience

"When the political system is so fundamentally flawed that it is unresponsive to an issue of colossal international importance...then every citizen has a responsibility to act. "

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